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Drink driver who had four pints in Portadown bar hit with 18 month road ban

Defendant has been told has been told he will have to resit his test if he wants to get his licence back

Drink driving Craigavon Court

A man who was unable to stand upright when pulled over for drink driving has been told he will have to resit his test if he wants to get his licence back.

Leandro Viera, with an address at Glendinning Way in Portadown, appeared before Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday charged with driving with excess alcohol.

The prosecution outlined that on June 17, shortly before 1am, police used blue lights to pull over a silver Mercedes travelling along the Armagh Road in Portadown.

The driver attempted to reverse the car back onto the kerb at this stage.

When questioned, the driver – Viera – admitted consuming four beers in a bar in Portadown an hour prior to being stopped.

Police noted he was intoxicated, his eyes glazed, with a smell of alcohol on his breath. He was unsteady on his feet and as a result was told to sit back down. He failed a preliminary breath test at the scene, clocking more than double the legal limit.

The court heard how the 44-year-old had a relevant drunk in charge conviction which led the defence and District Judge Bernie Kelly to question whether it meant an automatic three year suspension.

However, after some conferring with various solictors in the courtroom, District Judge Kelly said she was not “hamstrung” by the three years but that his previous ban “didn’t provide him with the necessary ability to stop this sort of behaviour”.

Defence solicitor Conor Downey urged the district judge to keep the ban to a minimum but admitted he was fighting a losing battle on that request.

Viera was handed a fine of £350 and disqualified for driving for 18 months and will remain disqualified until he passes his driving test again. He was given 10 weeks to pay his fine, or face 14 days in prison.

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